A miracle happened to me years ago in
1981. I had just gotten out of college and was working in a
factory that made plastic sheeting. I had an immediate enemy
in Joe, a man who felt that since he had been working on the machines for
20 years he should have been given the engineer's job instead of some kid
right out of college. So, Joe was always making my life tough
and I would pray and do my best to overcome evil with good by always trying
to help him. One day, Joe was talking to Phil, another co-worker,
and while they were talking Joe was cleaning a die. To clean off
all of the old plastic from one of these dies you had to heat the die to
about 400 degrees and scrape all of the old burnt plastic off with a putty
knife. I came by and asked Joe if he needed help he said "Sure,
hold these" as he unscrewed some bolts from this super hot die.
Now Joe was wearing heavy asbestos gloves so that he didn't burn himself.
I wasn't thinking so I said sure and held out my hand and Joe puts these
red hot bolts in my hand deliberately trying to burn me. Suddenly,
as I stood there holding these bolts I noticed that both Joe and Phil were
standing there with their mouths wide open and not saying a word.
It dawned on me that they thought the bolts were hot but they didn't realize
that the bolts were cool (at least that's what I thought).
So, I went to touch Joe with a bolt to show him it wasn't hot and he backed
up and was ready to hit me so I just put the bolts back down and walked
away and didn't think anything more of it.
Well, about 6 months after I stopped working there
the entire scene suddenly replayed in my mind one day. I could
remember the smoke rising from the die. I remembered the thick
asbestos gloves that Joe was wearing so that he wouldn't get burned because
the dies (and the bolts) were heated to 400 degree for cleaning.
I remember the astonished looks they gave me. So, I called
Phil at my old employer's and asked if he remembered the incident.
He said he remembered it well and that he thought I had a cast iron hand
because, while I thought the bolt was cool, it had just been removed from
the die so it had to be red hot. So, while the whole thing
was happening, I was thinking that the bolt was cool and that they were
mistaken but I was the one who was wrong. The bolt was red
hot when it was handed to me and it had no effect on me because God stepped
in and wouldn't let the evil of the world hurt me when I was trying to
do the right thing. Whenever I have had doubts about God, I
remember that incident and remember that He is always in control.
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